Expertise was a well-funded startup building a platform to help people hire local professionals. Everything was designed from the ground up with scale in mind to try to eat Thumbtack's lunch.
Our main strategy was to beat everyone in SEO with an aggressive content marketing plan. I helped devise our main, highly effective strategy in the first week on the job: creating well-researched and high-quality business review pages in the style of the Wirecutter. These pages compared all of the options available in each city for different local services: We evaluated 97 Bankruptcy Lawyers in Chandler, AZ and Picked the Top 11.
I built and managed a team of 30 freelance writers and 5 designers to review >50,000 businesses across >2500 unique pages.
After The Orchard bought TVT records, we owned the rights to Pitbull's music before he signed to Sony. We decided to cash in by releasing a compilation album. I was given a hard drive of old Pitbull photoshoots and was told to go nuts.
I talked with some people at the label more familiar with his body of work, and discovered that he is known for a signature expression – basically duckface + knowing smirk. I noticed the expression over and over again in his photos, and I was inspired to make a parody of Andy Warhol's "Marilyn Monroe's Lips". This was mostly a joke and the label manager was initially horrified, but after seeing it in context, the same photo that I used for this ended up becoming the final cover.
I also designed a custom typeface, inspired by his early album covers and club flyers.
After I participated in the production of the award‑winning interactive documentary "Welcome to Pine Point" I noticed that there might be a reusable format: a series of digital spreads set to music and meant to be read in sequence. This is an interactive music video and proof of concept project.
In cinema, motion and sound have proven time and time again to combine in unexpected and powerful ways. This approach combines some of that power with the benefits of giving the viewer the option to remain on a spread to contemplate or to quickly skip ahead at the pace they desire, which lends itself to a certain kinesthetic immersion. The use of text frees up the visuals and the audio to be less literal and to form their own parallel lines of thought.
Code created for this project was also used in the project "Living Los Sures: 89 Steps".
"Wall Cloud" received some attention at The Orchard and I was asked to spec out what it would cost to create these projects for album releases at scale, but they balked at the budget I proposed (which included ample pay for illustrators, poets, and other creators). In retrospect I should have been more conservative.
Ganaz is a startup making a workforce management platform, initially targeted at the agriculture/food processing space, that enables employers to recruit, message, and manage their multilingual migrant workforce through SMS en masse. I joined the team in a hybrid design and front-end development role.
In a mad 2 month dash, I created a design system, React component library, and the entire presentational layer for a responsive web app that helps farms communicate with workers (with 45K daily texts sent out), in order to have a product to show in time for the autumn farming season. The design I came up with was a big selling feature: it borrowed heavily from familiar design patterns found in Outlook, Excell, and texting apps (WhatsApp, etc)
Over the next several months I was able to help continually add new features while managing and reducing the technical and design debt.
In my role at The Orchard I identified ways to unify the organization's design language while working with the existing legacy systems.
I started out in the marketing department creating microsites for album releases. Once I created a bunch of reusable code and templates to streamline the process, I bounced around to a few different places on the product side: improving the design of our app marketplace (in which our API was opened up to third-party developers), and leading efforts to make the core experience (of uploading album and video content to the various stores/platforms) less janky and hideous.
The Orchard's design focus had always been on agility and features at the expense of a heavy load of technical and design debt. In particular, I was agitated that the home page of the app had no less than 8 different sans-serif fonts. I reverse-engineered a consistent, flexible, modular design system and worked with a team of designers to implement it throughout a large legacy software system and multiple sub‑branded properties.
Air Mediaworks is a funding source for local public TV and Radio Stations to make interactive stories. I created a site to showcase the year's funded projects and lead in the potential visitors.
The overall idea of the map comes from one of their bold claims: the idea that when these projects all come together they can represent the American experience. I carved block prints of different sections of the US map, which then move independently on the site.